Media Advisory: Nurses return to Queen’s Park to discuss pressing issues and release report

Press Release

Feb. 28, 2023

For the first time since 2020, nurses are heading to Queen’s Park to meet face-to-face with members of provincial parliament (MPP) on March 2. They will be advocating for the nursing profession and peoples’ health as part of the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario’s (RNAO) 23rd annual Queen’s Park Day (QPD).

“QPD is a highly anticipated event among RNAO members because it provides nurses with the opportunity to speak directly with MPPs about what’s needed in the province to support the health of Ontarians and their health-care system,” says RNAO President Dr. Claudette Holloway. “As Ontario works to heal the wounds exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s crucial that nurses’ voices, knowledge and experiences are heard and acted on. At the end of the day, nurses provide care across all health sectors and settings 24 hours a day, seven days a week and know all too well what changes are desperately needed.”

During a series of breakfast meetings, more than 150 registered nurses (RN), nurse practitioners (NP) and nursing students will discuss priority issues with their local MPPs. On the breakfast table will be the nursing crisis and what’s needed to retain nurses and build nursing careers in Ontario. Another key priority: recognizing and addressing the province’s opioid overdose crisis as a public health emergency that demands action to prevent more deaths.

In the afternoon, leaders of all political parties and critics will formally address and take questions from nurses at the University of Toronto’s Hart House.

To profile the many education and career pathways available to Ontario nurses, Holloway and RNAO CEO Dr. Doris Grinspun will release the association’s Nursing Career Pathways report that morning during a media conference moderated by immediate past-president Morgan Hoffarth. This report features public policy recommendations to break down barriers for Ontario nurses and clear the pathways so the profession and Ontarians can thrive in this province.

“Nursing is powered by nurses who have an unwavering commitment to make a difference in peoples’ lives. Ours is a profession filled with endless opportunities in all roles and sectors, all of which are critical to an effective health system in our province. It’s important for the government to understand the importance and the complexities of the profession when making decisions that impact our health system. RNAO’s Nursing Career Pathways illustrates the centrality of nursing to a high functioning health system,” says Grinspun, adding that “a strong nursing profession means timely access and quality care for Ontarians. In order for nurses to prosper in our province, the government and employers must heed with urgency the recommendations in this report and build careers for nurses in Ontario.”

The event agenda is available on RNAO’s website.

WHAT: RNAO’s 23rd annual Queen’s Park Day and release of its Nursing Career Pathways report.

WHO:

  • President Dr. Claudette Holloway
  • CEO Dr. Doris Grinspun
  • Immediate past-president Morgan Hoffarth
  • Board of directors, assembly of leaders and general members
  • Hon. Doug Ford, premier of Ontario
  • Hon. Sylvia Jones, deputy premier and minister of health (confirmed)
  • Hon. Paul Calandra, minister of long-term care (confirmed)
  • MPP Marit Stiles, leader of the official opposition (confirmed) and MPP Wayne Gates, opposition critic of long-term care, retirement homes and home care (confirmed)
  • MPP John Fraser, interim leader of the Liberal Party of Ontario (confirmed) and MPP Adil Shamji, Ontario Liberal Caucus health, northern development, Indigenous affairs, and colleges and universities critic (confirmed)
  • MPP Mike Schreiner, leader of the Green Party of Ontario (confirmed)

WHEN: Thursday, March 2, 2023

  • Nursing Career Pathways media conference: 9:45 a.m. – 10:15 a.m. ET
    • Queen’s Park media studio
  • QPD: 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. ET
    • Breakfast meetings: Queen’s Park legislative dining room
    • Afternoon session: Hart House, University of Toronto, 7 Hart House Circle

Members of the media are welcome to attend the events. QPD will be livestreamed on RNAO’s YouTube channel.

The Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO) is the professional association representing registered nurses, nurse practitioners and nursing students in Ontario. Since 1925, RNAO has advocated for healthy public policy, promoted excellence in nursing practice, increased nurses’ contribution to shaping the health system, and influenced decisions that affect nurses and the public we serve. For more information about RNAO, visit RNAO.ca or follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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Contact info

Madison Scaini

Communications Officer/Writer
Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO)
1-800-268-7199 ext. 274
416-408-5645
mscaini@RNAO.ca

Marion Zych
Director of Communications
Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO)
1-800-268-7199 ext. 209
416-408-5605
647-406-5605 (cell)
mzych@RNAO.ca

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